Strange that the email didn't mention his passing.
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I am surprised and deeply saddened to hear this. He did a Fisher 400C preamp for me last year and it sounds great. He would contact me daily throughout the whole restoration. Always wanted to post a great review here of his work, but never sat down and got to it. What a shame to go so young. Anyone know what he died from? His obit is painfully short. This man made so many audiophiles happy, seems like he deserved more words about his life. I remember not long ago he was selling off the Hibachi amps here at a ridiculous low price.In retrospect, almost like he knew his days were numbered and that was his gift to the audiophiles of the world.
A few years ago I had acquired a used TAD 150 Signature preamp here on Agon. I had several questions and like others noted here he was always accommodating and pleasant. He provided the best customer service I've encountered to date.
I was really bummed out when I read this post. His legacy lives on through all the gear he sold.
I'd also like to add this:
If I remember correctly, he left a job at GE where he was one of the lead engineers (Senior Electronic Engineer-III) to pursue his love of audio gear and to share it with folks like us. To think that after 30 years of being an engineer he chose to make our lives better. I can't think of higher praise.
All the best,
For many years, Paul ran a little store on School street in Naperville, Illinois by the North Central College campus. He called it the "Bizzy Bee". Google Bizzy bee and you will still find references to the store. You can even see a picture of it if you are handy with google maps and street view. The front of the store was rows of bins of used cds bought from and sold mostly to the college kids. Paul worked in a very small area in back behind the cash register counter. He bought and sold cds and repaired vacuum cleaners of all things. He then switched from vacuums to tube electronics which he would purchase from ebay, refurbish and resell. He preferred Fisher receivers, particularly the 400 where he designed a hot rod version and the 500C. Agoners always mention his great customer service. I would stop by the store frequently to BS. I quickly learned that there was no sense hanging around if the phone rang from a customer or a prospective customer. He would spend what seemed like hours chatting. About 10 years ago, the cd business started drying up as the kids downloaded more and more music and Paul said repairs took too much time versus selling price. He started searching Chinese companies for electronics he could modify and sell under what became Tube Audio Design. He soon closed the Bizzy Bee store and moved the business to his home in Wheaton. No sense paying rent for a workshop. I did not see Paul after he closed the store, but I would occasionally send him links that I found discussing his products. He would respond with long chatty emails. Most recently, I chided him about returning to Fisher repair. He said he knew the current recession was starting before everyone else as his sales of new equipment had all but dried up. I did not know of his passing until this forum. I'll miss him.
What an incredibly smart, helpful, and generous person Paul was. Years ago, when I bought his TAD-60, the process of working with him was such a positive one, I asked him to sign the amp, and with his typical good nature, he did so. I enjoyed reading these posts and those from other forums and seeing how universally well regarded Paul was, and I offer my condolences to his family, friends, and those who had the good fortune to have worked with him.
Wow. This makes me strangely sad. I did not know Paul in person, but I bought my hibachi amps from him. The emails we exchanged were very friendly and definitely chatty. It only took one for me to decide that he genuinely liked people, loved audio, and cared that people were happy with his products. He even asked me to send pics once everything was setup. His attitude alone convinces me that, once it was time to upgrade my preamp, I would be buying one of his. In fact, trying to find out why his website is down was what lead me to this thread. Rest in peace, Paul. You made a lot of people happy.
I just bought my first tube amp today -- a TAD-60, and only after trying to reach the links to information on the amp (http://www.angelfire.com/biz/bizzyb/TAD-60.html is frequently mentioned) and finding the links to be 404 did I learn that Paul passed away.
It would be nice to preserve the information on his original products online, such as instruction manuals, etc. since part of his audio legacy will be all the great equipment he created changing hands for years.
I just came across this today as i was searching for Paul's contact information. I am deeply saddened to learn of hs passing. I knew Paul first as the quirky shopkeep of my favorite record store, I loved coming in not only because he stocked some of the best music in town, but because he was so much fun to hang out and chat with. When I think of my teenage years, Paul is always one of the standout characters. He was always kind, funny and full of interesting conversation. Sorry i havent much to add as far as Audio design goes, but Paul really meant a lot to me and i wanted to share just a little bit about him.
I reached out to TAD last week on a setup question only to learn from his wife Kathy that Paul had passed in 2012. My last interaction with Paul was in Jan 2012 just prior to his death when he did a tube change and fluff and buff on my TAD-150. Ironically I am sitting here now listening to Telarcs recording of Oscar Peterson meet Roy Hargrove and Ralph Moore through the TAD-150 while receiving the news of his passing. I'm sure his pair of NOS output tubes is still glowing warmly somewhere.
Warmest regards to Kathy and his family.